Jul 16, 2024  
2016-2017 UMass Dartmouth Undergraduate Catalog 
2016-2017 UMass Dartmouth Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Research, Outreach, and Service

UMass Dartmouth is the SouthCoast leader in premier affordable world-class undergraduate and graduate education and undergraduate and graduate level research. Through its renowned  faculty, state of the art research laboratories, and unique centers, the mission of UMASS Dartmouth is to engage in innovative research, community outreach, and service and to be the intellectual catalyst for regional economic, social, and cultural development.

The following are profiles of these arms of the university which extend into the community, and help UMass Dartmouth serve its diverse constituencies. The listing is by no means exhaustive, but presents some key programs and offices that help the institution fulfill its broader purposes and its new strategic plan UMASSDTransform2020.

Laboratories, Centers, and Special Programs


Centers, institutes, laboratories, and special programs play a unique role in fulfilling our strategic plan of UMASSDTransform2020. They:

  • encourage and facilitate education that is multidisciplinary and collaborative;
  • support and assist faculty from different disciplines in their research work;
  • explore and expedite ways to incorporate modern technology into learning;
  • develop initiatives and activities to bolster the economy;
  • bring cultural and artistic events to both students and the surrounding communities.

Listed below are some examples. Please note that other examples can be found throughout this catalogue. 

The School for Marine Science and Technology (SMAST), an academic unit of UMass Dartmouth, is a major center of education, research, and economic development for this campus and the entire UMass system. It hosts interdisciplinary programs and research ventures in marine science, oceanography, and engineering and technology development and policy.

The SMAST faculty consists of 20 faculty members, many of whom hold joint appointments in one of UMass Dartmouth’s colleges. UMass Dartmouth SMAST is the lead UMass wide campus for Marine Science and Technology, and oversees such activities of all of the UMass campuses including UMass Boston, Lowell, and Amherst. Its academic program is world renowned and contains research at the very top of the field. Research funding comes from all of the major federal funding agencies for Marine Science, including NSF, ONR, NOAA, NASA, as well as state and local agencies and foundations. The Department of Fisheries Oceanography is considered in the top ranks of such research worldwide. Recent discoveries on the population dynamics of scallops has resulted in the sustenance of the New England scallop industry, valued at an estimated $1 billion. The FVCOM numerical model, developed by Professor Changsen Chen, is the most often used oceanographic marine model worldwide. It is capable of simultaneously predicting overall flow and the flow in estuaries and bays. The Massachusetts estuary program, led by Professor Brian Howes, is the leading program in Massachusetts, and one of the largest such programs worldwide, in providing assessment and recommendations for remediation for the health of estuarine bodies of water from pollution.

SMAST is located in New Bedford, Massachusetts on Buzzards Bay. With 32,000 square feet, the facility features 14 research laboratories, including a freestanding acousto/optic tank. It incorporates a 300 gallon/minute flow-through sea water system which provides ambient Buzzards Bay sea water to all laboratories and a large sea water tank room. It also contains: space to store and maintain marine organisms for use in research and teaching; a radionuclide laboratory; a greenhouse for growth and maintenance of aquatic photosynthetic organisms under natural light; three temperature control rooms for long-term behavioral and physiological experiments and acclimation of marine organisms for culture and reproduction; a 50-foot coastal research vessel, the R/V Lucky Lady; and a dock for temporary mooring and off-loading of research vessels. Support areas include a machine shop, computer room, a conference room with state-of-the-art visual display capabilities and distance learning hardware, and a library/chart room.

The facility’s proximity to Buzzards Bay, New Bedford’s fishing fleet, and numerous marine-oriented commercial, research, and educational institutions offers unique resources and opportunities, and fosters development of strong links with industry, government agencies, and research and academic institutions. Those interested may contact Dr. Stephen Lohrenz, Dean of the School for Marine Science and Technology, at 508.999.8925, or visit www.smast.umassd.edu

As one of only eight members of the National Textile Center (NTC) the university has received research funding to enable faculty to undertake fundamental research on developing and/or improving the many technologies involved in textiles, soft materials, and fibers. The National Textile Center (NTC), a research consortium of eight universities—including UMass Dartmouth, Auburn University, Clemson University, Cornell University, Georgia Institute of Technology, North Carolina State University, University of California Davis, and Philadelphia University—seeks to be an agent leading change in the industry’s vision and in education for global competitiveness. The center conducts research to discover, design, and develop new materials, innovative and improved manufacturing, and integrated systems essential to the success of a modern US textile enterprise. It also trains personnel, establishes industrial partnerships, and creates transfer mechanisms to ensure the utilization of technologies developed. Contact Qinguo Fan Chairperson, Department of Bioengineering Department, gfan@umassd.edu, for details.

The Advanced Technology and Manufacturing Center (ATMC) is a first class University Incubator. It  is located approximately seven miles from the main campus, on Route 6 in Fall River, with easy access to Routes 24 and 195.

The focus of the ATMC is to bring in new Technology Venture Companies (TVCs) at a very early stage of development and “incubate” them within three years to financial sustainability. These companies then graduate into the local region, providing economic stimulus via new jobs and new products and/or services. The ATMC, through its close connection to the many assets of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, provides the pathway to successful graduation. The overall mission of the ATMC can be summarized thus:

  • Incubate (market, develop, graduate) Tech Venture Companies  (TVCs)
  • Emphasize Connectivity of TVCs with South Coast region during and after graduation
  • Connect TVCs with UMassD assets, e.g. Colleges of Eng, Bus, Law, Mar Sc/Tec
  • Provide a forum for advancing local entrepreneurship through conferences, workshops, and symposia
  • Provide experiential learning opportunities for student interns
  • Support Infrastructure for New TVCs
  • Office and lab space
  • Assistance in business planning and funding
  • High value intern work force & faculty collaboration
  • Networking opportunities through entrepreneurship programs & venture forums

Program highlights

  •  Incubated a total of 40 startup companies
  •  Currently serving 13 companies in Cleantech (Battery Systems), Marine Technology, Biotech/Life Science & Software
  •  15 successful graduate companies
  •  80% stayed in Massachusetts & helped grow the local economy
  •  Over 200 new jobs created
  •  Combined annual sales over $50 million in 2014

Conference space features moveable walls so groups of 20 to 200 can meet at any one time. A wide variety of presentation technologies, video and teleconference, and Internet access are available.

For more information, contact Joanne Costa at 508.999.9121; its website is http://www.atmc.umassd.edu/.

The Business Innovation Research Center (BIRC) is designed to conduct research and disseminate knowledge about emerging business practices. Working with national and international business academicians, the center provides activities such as conferences, custom-tailored programs and seminars, and courses in emerging business theory and practice for regional corporations and business networks. For more information, call 508.910.9066.

The UMass Cranberry Health Research Center is a collaborative established through a 2011 Science and Technology Initiative grant from the UMass President’s Office.  The Center encompasses researchers from all five UMass campuses, other academic institutions, hospitals and private laboratories throughout the U.S. and Canada. The Center’s collaborations combine the strengths of academia, medical institutions and industry to provide solid scientific evidence for cranberry’s role in health and nutrition.  

The Center for Policy Analysis is a multidisciplinary research unit which provides research, information, and technical assistance to government, nonprofit, and educational agencies. The center’s guiding mission is betterment of the economic and social well-being of citizens. The center, striving to remove the walls between education and research, spearheads a number of university and community-based education programs. Students have the chance to work at the center and so become familiar with applied social science techniques. For more information, call 508.990.9264.

The Center for Portuguese Studies and Culture is a multidisciplinary international studies and outreach unit dedicated to the study of the language, literatures, and cultures of the Portuguese-speaking world. The center hosts comprehensive summer institutes and sponsors a wide range of educational activities and social events to which the public is invited. Support for its work has come from the Luso-American Foundation, the Portuguese government, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Camöes Institute, the Gulbenkian Foundation, and local businesses and friends of Portugal and UMass Dartmouth. For more information, call 508.999.8255.

The Center for Marketing Research has a mission to facilitate the economic development of the region by providing an affordable, high-quality economic alternative to meeting business needs for research, training, and consulting in any and all aspects of marketing. The center offers businesses research, training, and consulting in the areas of accounting, finance, information systems, management, and marketing. Recently, the center expanded its marketing offerings to include branding, packaging, logo development, creation of promotional materials, and most recently, customer service training and television commercial production. Businesses are able to draw on the university’s resources, including the expertise of the Charlton faculty and assistance from students who are guided by their professors. For more information, call 508.999.8756.

The Center for Scientific Computing and Visualization Research focuses on computationally-driven research that addresses the pressing needs of modern engineering, mechanics, fluid dynamics, and electromagnetics. Established in 2012, the center aims to promote and conduct high-level interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research in scientific computing and to mentor graduates in the Engineering and Applied Science Ph.D. program as well as undergraduates from a range of departments in a supportive, broad, and deep interdisciplinary research environment. The major goals of the center are to promote internationally-recognized computational research that advances the fields of modern applied science, data-driven algorithms, and visualization and imaging techniques; to educate and mentor the next generation of researchers in the computational sciences and to provide focus and support for scientific computing at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

The center houses state-of-the-art computational clusters that give students and faculty access to sophisticated hardware tools that can be leveraged to solve large-scale parallel computing and data-intensive tasks. 

The Center for University, School, and Community Partnerships offers professional and educational services, consultation, and leadership development programs. For more information, call 774.929.3002 or visit www.umassd.edu/cusp/

Established in 1984 as the Massachusetts Field Center for Teaching and Learning, the Center for University, School, and Community Partnerships provides high quality professional learning experiences for beginning and experienced K-12 teachers to strengthen their content knowledge, broaden their teaching practices and curricula, and acquire leadership skills necessary to improve schools and student achievement. The center offers opportunities for the professional growth of teachers by organizing mentoring and induction institutes; sponsoring conferences, forums, grant programs, and publications on current educational issues; promoting teacher leadership and professional collaboration through networks; and serving as a clearinghouse of educational resources and research. The center draws on the expertise and experience of outstanding teachers to inform its programs, school reform initiatives and educational policy. The center also supports special initiatives to help schools implement mathematics and science programs, like Project Impact, the Science Partnerships Program, and the Southcoast Regional Math Network. The center is the site of the Buzzards Bay Writing Project.

The James J Kaput Center for Research and Innovation in Mathematics Education is dedicated to democratizing access to high level math and confronting the national problem of low math achievement, especially in underprivileged populations. The purpose of the Center is to provide a focus and support for sustained investigation of foundational issues in the field of mathematics education, issues that will be chosen to enhance and deepen ongoing research by its members and associates. The Center is a place where fundamental problems in mathematics education will be studied, discussed and analyzed through conferences, colloquium series, basic research and development, commissioned reports, and think-tank meetings.

The Center for Rehabilitation Engineering helps to improve the quality of life of disabled individuals through creative use of engineering knowledge and technology. The center develops innovative rehabilitation equipment, techniques, and services, and makes them available to agencies and individuals with disabilities. Volunteers—students, university staff, and community members—are critical to the continuing success of the organization, which has received regional and nationwide acclaim. For more information, call 508.999.8482.

The Center for Indic Studies fosters education about, and understanding of, the arts, philosophy, culture, societal values, and customs of India. The programs and special events promote the study of issues of contemporary Indian society and their place within a multicultural global society. The center also seeks to increase Americans’ knowledge of contemporary India and its diversity in the 21st century. For more information, call 508.999.8588.

The Omer E. and Laurette M. Boivin Center for French Language and Culture promotes and supports teaching of, research about, and the appreciation and preservation of the French language and culture. Among its many projects are a certificate program in International Business/French, a cultural series of speakers and entertainers, and the annual Boivin Center Scholarship. For more information, call 508.999.8235.

The Center for Jewish Culture, through its educational and cultural programs, aims to increase understanding and communication between Jewish and non-Jewish people of southeastern Massachusetts. The center, which often collaborates with other groups, sponsors workshops, lectures, seminars, and institutes that explore aspects of Jewish culture. It works to expand the Judaica collection in the library, including an archive on the history of Jewish organizations and individuals in the southeastern area. The center also contributes to the support of the campus chapter of Hillel, the international Jewish student organization. For more information, call 508.910.6551.

The Arnold M Dubin Labor Education Center was established in 1975 to meet the educational needs of workers as members and leaders in the labor movement and promote understanding and cooperation between labor and business, religious, environmental, and other civic and community organizations. The center provides credit and non-credit courses, seminars and special programs, offers support and consultation to the educational programs of labor organizations; provides workers and unions with technical and informational resources; serves as liaison between the university and labor organizations on many levels including worker literacy, training, and economic development activity; and offers a minor and a certificate in Labor Studies and job-related training through the Workers Education Program. For more information, call 508.999.8007.

The Gerontology Center is a multidisciplinary venture, which develops and coordinates programs and courses on gerontology, the study of aging. The center maintains ties with the community through its educational and research-based activities. It has a close relationship with the university’s academic offerings, which include a certificate program and a minor in gerontology. For more information, call 508.999.8376.

The Robert F. Kennedy Assassination Archive is an unparalleled, extensive collection of police and FBI reports, audio and video tapes, transcripts, and private papers relating to the assassination of Democratic presidential candidate and New York senator Robert F Kennedy. A project of Political Science Professor Philip H Melanson, PhD, with the UMass Dartmouth library, the archive has been recognized nationally and internationally both for its contents and as an important testament to fundamental rights to information. Located in the library, the archive can be reached at 508.999.8686.

The International Student Leadership Institute (ISLI) is a program sponsored by the University of Notre Dame and offered annually by UMass Dartmouth to New England high school students. The institute develops the leadership skills of the participants, and encourages the students to seek opportunities for personal advancement in the service of others. UMass Dartmouth students are group leaders. Persons interested can contact John Fernandes, Science and Engineering Center director, at 508.999.8718.

The Spotlight Program is a cultural enrichment program in which area high school students come to the UMass Dartmouth campus for a series of lectures, workshops, courses, and field trips during the academic year. The director is English Professor William Nelles, PhD, 508.999.8278; for information, contact the Program Coordinator, Trace Holmes, at 617.417.5328.

The Upward Bound Program is a college preparatory program for high school students, designed to provide academic, informational, and motivational support to students as they prepare for a college career. The program provides services for students who attend New Bedford High School, Greater New Bedford Vocational High School, New Bedford Global Learning Charter Public School, and Wareham High School. Upward Bound attempts to ensure that every student applies to, is admitted to, and succeeds in college. The program seeks to strengthen students’ academic skills; instill an attitude of ambition and disciplined commitment to hard work; and to provide guidance in the selection of educational and career goals.

The Upward Bound Program recognizes that scholars are most likely to succeed in college if they are given key fundamental skills relevant to academic progress and personal growth and development. The program’s educational aim focuses on reinforcing scholars’ basic academic skills; engaging them in critical thinking; assisting them in studying through the aid of tutorials, and preparing them for SAT and MCAS examinations. In addition, the program addresses other issues critical to success in high school and college such as time management, self-discipline, responsibility, self-esteem, and multicultural sensitivity and respect. The program offers a six week summer residential component on the UMass Dartmouth campus. Students attend classes in a variety of subjects, and many are offered a tuition-free college credit course. Academic activities are paired with a host of other activities and trips, culminating in a student-developed production at the end of the program.

The Upward Bound Program’s offices are located at the UMass Dartmouth campus on the ground floor of LARTS, Room 024. For further information please call 508.999.8713.

A number of offices at UMass Dartmouth provide services of special interest to the surrounding region and beyond and are sources of information and assistance.

UMass Dartmouth Office of Institutional Advancement


The UMass Dartmouth Office of Institutional Advancement develops and directs the university’s fund-raising and alumni relations activities.  The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Foundation is the non-profit entity that receives gifts on behalf of the campus. It is the mission of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Foundation to secure and steward a broad array of resources to support the scholarly development and personal growth of UMass Dartmouth students, and to promote the graduation of thoughtful citizens who will contribute to the intellectual capital of the region.

UMass Dartmouth Office of Alumni Relations


The Office of Alumni Relations serves as the liaison between the university and its 50,000 graduates. Alumni Relations works to enhance the lifelong relationship between alums and their alma mater through various programs and activities both on campus and in their community.

Represented by their own Alumni Relations Boards, the university and the School of Law sponsor a number of professional development, continuing education, and general events that provide opportunities to reconnect, to network and to engage with our students, the “next generation of alumni.”

Sponsored Projects Administration

This office helps the university realize one of its key goals: supporting and fostering research, scholarship, and creative productions by faculty and staff. It does so by providing:

  • Assistance in identifying funding opportunities; maintaining up-to-date information on sources likely to be most responsive to the university’s needs; and lending administrative support for faculty research projects;
  • Assistance and guidance in all aspects of development and submission of a proposal;
  • Negotiation and administration of contracts for awards, on behalf of the university.
  • Assistance and guidance in post-award management.

The Office of Research Administration is located in Room 001, Foster Administration Building, 508.999.8953.

Office of Institutional Research and Assessment


Institutional Research and Assessment designs and manages the programs and processes that enable UMass Dartmouth to look at itself and determine if it is fulfilling its mission. The office researches data and produces information and analyses; does strategic planning, with a focus on outcomes assessment; studies specific issues and implements the recommended course of action; conceptualizes and manages data systems; analyzes and recommends on program and policy issues; and advises on planning and management of resources.

The office oversees preparation of the many reports which the UMass system, state and federal governments, and public and private groups require. It works with the academic community on evaluating and implementing actions that aim to enhance students’ education and university experience. It also offers consultation and implementation assistance on institutional surveys.  For further information on learning outcomes assessment, call 508.999.8486. The Office of Institutional Research and Assessment is located on the second floor of the Foster Administration Building.